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Repairing a wood slat swing by replacing the slats with POLYWOOD Plastic Lumber

This was a simple project that basically only required the removal of the old wooden slats and then the installation of the new slats using new hardware and new stainless chains.  The entire project was about 4 hours of labor, $90 in parts and plastic and it restored a swing for at least 30 more years of use.  The plastic color is dark green Plastic lumber.

Here are the steps taken to restore this outdoor furniture item with new hardware and plastic slats:

  1. Removed all old wooden furniture back and seat slats
  2. Drilled / Cut / Ground out all old hardware holes in preparation for new hardware (stainless)
  3. Cut plastic lumber slats to the correct length (this swing was 5′ feet long)
  4. Took slats and mounted them to the swing seat braces
  5. Attached the swing stainless chains to the seat assembly
  6. Mounted the seat assembly to the frame with the stainless chains

The process is obviously fairly straight forward, but here are some tips that will help you when you are switching from wood to plastic.

  • Remember, wood is more rigid than plastic.  Take you time and plan for plenty of new bracing.  With this swing project the only additional requirements were one fascia board added to the front of the swing that was placed on vertical edge to support the weight that will be on the swing seat. 
  • Use normal woodworking tools.  You can route, cut and shape plastic lumber easily and it looks great since the color is all the way through.
  • If you are worried about fading don’t buy the vibrant hues of plastic, vibrant hues all fade even the best of them.  Go with a traditional color like a green, brown, tan, teak, sand or white.
  • Remember, plastic lumber has some give to it.  Don’t worry, its tough enough to handle years of rugged use.  Enjoy.

Posted in high density polyethylene, Outdoor Furniture, Plastic Lumber Profiles, POLY, Premium Grade Plastic.

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